Make-A-Wish kids lead Hot Harley Nights parade - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Make-A-Wish kids lead Hot Harley Nights parade

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It's been a huge night at Hot Harley Nights.

Kids who benefited from Make-A-Wish led a massive motorcycle parade to downtown Sioux Falls.

One family at the parade said they were overwhelmed by all the support from Hot Harley Nights and Make-A-Wish.

But it's not just today they felt the love, from the second Make-A-Wish stepped into their lives, they couldn't believe how wonderful the foundation is.

10-year-old Dylan has handled more than most.

"She's had two open heart surgeries, since birth, her first one was done in Minneapolis and her second one was two years ago in Michigan," said Dylan's mom, Carrie Rehnke.

Since Dylan's surgeries are out of town that means little sister Bergen has to stay home.

"Going into Dylan's most recent heart surgery, we had to have big talks with Bergen about how her sister could maybe die, and we had to have discussions about about why she couldn't come along with us," Carrie said.

But in February they got a little break.

Thanks to Make-A-Wish, the whole family went to Disney World.

And now, they're leading the parade at Hot Harley Nights.

"I'm on the verge of tears at this point. It's very overwhelming. As we drove in and went past all of the motorcycles of the people that are here just to celebrate and champion our kids," Carrie said.

Carrie added the family gets to celebrate how far Dylan has come with the hundreds of people who came out to support Make-A-Wish and all the families with sick kids.

"They're just regular kids, it's a different path we're on, but they're still just our regular kids. Very overwhelming, amazing, the support, it leaves me speechless," Carrie continued.

Because of Dylan's condition, Carrie said they expect her to have more surgeries later in life, but right now, Dylan is as healthy as she has ever been and is running around at full steam.

Each year Hot Harley Nights helps raise thousands for Make-A-Wish South Dakota.

After the big turnout this year, they expect to top $2 million in contributions over the past 20 years.

Something fans of Hot Harley Nights say brings them back year after year.

"It's for the kids, it goes to a good cause. It just makes a positive impact on my life day to day, I look forward to it every summer," said Stephen Hendrickson who has been participating in the parade for 15 years.

 

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